Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Tom Callaway, the man of FAIL

Last Thursday the 1st, Tom Callaway visited WNE and gave a presentation on his scale of fail which can be found here: http://www.theopensourceway.org/book/The_Open_Source_Way-How_to_tell_if_a_FLOSS_project_is_doomed_to_FAIL.html. Earlier in the semester we scaled GNOME Cheese and Eikga as two OSS projects and how much they fail, but having him talk about each point of the scale was informative. Some of the things such as  Licensing and Code Oddities did not make a lot of sense going through the first time, but after he explained, the points were much more clearer. Knowing that every point within the scale have occurred at least once is quite humorous and having Tom tell stories about them was well worth the time.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Designing at its worse

We are half way through the semester and have hit the midway point in our Cheese Magnifier project. Design has been an interesting track, but I have not been one to notice how I've changed in time. Take Java for instance, I know that I know Java, and that I used to not know what is was, but I can't remember how I felt when I didn't know Java and was learning it for the first time. The same thing goes with design, I don't recall not knowing what design was. I can go through the various steps we have going through the SRS, the SDS, and the RRC and learning different things. The SRS is written for everyone to read and understand the project as a whole, and the SDS is written for the programmer in mind to create the project. The RRC is used to help critique the SRS to make sure the purpose of the project is being met. I can say what I learned, but the process has mainly been forgotten.

Learning through the FOSS world has been interesting. Most of the learning has been hands on. As for FOSS, I am one to lurk before posting or speaking my ideas even on message boards. The same thing happens on IRC, and as IRC has less text to lurk about, I have not spent a lot of time communicating to the FOSS communicating as that is not my forte, and have left that to another team member who is more secure in his ability to communicate to the masses. In this regard my FOSS learning has been dampened as I'm not using the advantage of being in a FOSS community, but because it is a FOSS community is why I'm not secure in the first place. As my learning has been hands-on in team meetings, I don't think that being or not being in a FOSS community makes a difference. Hopefully the second half of the semester leads to a better understanding.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Joanie Digg Visits

Thursday October 6th, Joanie Digg visited Western New England University to help explain our current project and give insight on our class projects. We learned what VIU's are and the difference between blind and near-blind people and the different techniques needed to solve visual problems for the users. Some things I found particularly useful as a seeker is the color filters used by VIU's. Before I though color filters where a method used to enhance images for a clearer image. I never though it was a simple utility that changed the color of text and the background. Seeing a real magnifier allowed for a better understanding about how to create a pseudo-magnifier. Thinking of software and hardware as a seeker is a lot different than using software and hardware as an end-user. Before when making menus for various applications and web pages, I added access keys and other functions because they were the standard. Having to deal with VIU's those standards now mean something a little different. Doing something because its what everyone else does, and doing something because others need it are two different things when doing all the little things in a project.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Cheese and Eikiga: The second Look

Last week, I was given an assignment to find out info about cheese an Ekiga. Upon which Mel from TOS looked at the classes submissions and wrote about them in her blog. I learned that it is easier to learn about projects from more experienced users. During the assignment , I was looking at the main pages for both projects to find information on both of them, but found after reading Mel's blog that the info I found was highly misinformed or the information I found I misinterpreted compared to the actual information. Ekiga looked still developing because of the more frequent updates, while cheese looked finished as it was updating less, but I missed that Eikga has been in the works for the past 10 years. My research abilities on finding information about OSS is very bad and needs to be improved. Also consistency between the class and different interpretations on readins also needs to be improved as the data found also contradicts each other, though according to Mel, both statements could be correct. I'm guessing it is a lack on knowledge on the correct place to look for information. Getting inside the circle and used to how everything works will be a daunting task.

An Empty IRC

As part of an assignment, I lurked in A11Y's IRC chat for a 24 hour period. My time of observation was this past weekend from Friday at 18:27 to Sunday 11:04. During that time I lost connection a few times due to campus internet failing twice which seems for about 10 minute periods. Through the weekend no one said anything, but many people came in and out of the client multiple times that weekend. On Friday, most traffic was  between 19:00 and 23:00. traffic did not pick up until 5:12 on Saturday which continued until about 7:30. I then lost connection around 10 reconnecting around 10:15 there was not any more traffic until 12 and then occasionally 1 person entering or leaving each hour for the rest of the day. Sunday had people enter and leave approx every 15 minutes. a11y seems to not be busy during the weekend.

Also gnome-bugsquad seems like a good mailing list to join

Saturday, September 10, 2011

First Blog

This is my first blog for my Software Engineering Course at Western New England University. My goals of this course is to learn more about the process and tool needed to create software and work in an open source environment. I also hope to become more confidant in my ability to  describe myself and my work in a reflection type style of writing. Writing, and escpeically writing about myself is not my forte at any level. Group working and hoping to learn the in and outs of the OSS community are two goals I hope for this semester